Fishing Report – October 23, 2014
Bull Shoals Lake Fishing Report
As of Wednesday, the Army Corps of Engineers reports the lake’s elevation at 654.67 feet msl (normal conservation pool – 659 msl).
Bull Shoals Lake Boat Dock said the only major changes in fishing have been water temperature and thermocline. The water temp is in the mid to upper 60s around the lake. The thermocline is falling fast; it seems to be around the 50-60 foot level. With the thermocline around the 60 foot level the bass will be deeper during the day. Early in the day and late in the day you might try some topwater baits, other than that try spoons in 50 to 60 feet of water, Carolina-rigged lizards, brush hogs and French fry worms, swim baits in 5 to 15 feet of water around any shallow shad balls. Topwater baits are starting work early in the morning and on cloudy days. Some crappie are being caught around brush in 20 to 35 feet of water on 1/32-oz. or 1/64-oz. jigs if the wind will allow it. Otherwise, a minnow or a small spoon will work. White bass are being caught up the creeks as far as you can go. Try 0 to 15 feet until you find them. There are reports of surfacing white bass schools around the lake during the day. White jigs, Rooster Tails, spoons, Roadrunner jigs, Rapalas and anything that looks like a minnow will work. Walleye are biting fairly well on nightcrawlers fished in 40 to 60 feet of water on a split-shot rig or trolled on a bottom bouncer and crawler harness. Vertically jigging a spoon in 40-60 feet of water is producing some walleye as well.
Ken Minsky of Ken Minksy’s Loch Leven Guide Service said the surface temperature at mid-lake has dropped to 69 degrees after last week’s rain, however the lake elevation has stayed fairly consistent. There is still a thermocline starting at about the 50 foot level but it is starting to deteriorate. With consistent temperatures in the top 50 feet of the water column fish that were once relating to the top of the thermocline can now move freely within the top 50 feet without temperature concerns. Kentucky bass are again showing up near docks in less than 15 feet of water. The best bite has been right before dark for both crappies and walleyes coming from about the 25 to 35 foot level over wood in creek arms that are not too far from the main lake on jigs. Smallmouths are coming from primary points in the main lake on jigs as well.